This article is written for people who are thinking about learning qigong for the first time. Although you can replace qigong with other things, I will use my own experience with qigong as an example.
- Adult learning exists only in the field which is uncomfortable.
This is what the leader of a certain circle said to me.
Here, I use the word “adult” to mean a person who has social common sense.
Being equipped with common sense also means being uncomfortable with things that go against common sense. The correct attitude is to not do anything that makes you feel uncomfortable as long as you continue to live within the bounds of what you consider common sense. For most of our daily lives, there should be no inconvenience in following this logic.
However, when you start something new, something you have never done before, knowledge and events that are outside the scope of your common sense will appear, and you will feel uncomfortable. If you think, “I feel uncomfortable, so I’ll stop,” you will not be able to proceed with your new endeavor.
What you do not feel uncomfortable with is, in fact, what you already know. Therefore, working on something that does not make you feel uncomfortable is a process of confirming what you already know, and does not lead to new learning. And since adults have experienced most things, most things are based on their own experience, and feeling no discomfort is a process of confirming the correctness of what you know, and does not lead to new progress.
If you want to add a new world for adults, you can only do so in a world that feels different. Therefore, if you want to learn something new, you need to accept it even though you feel uncomfortable.
If you want to learn qigong, you may feel uncomfortable with what you are taught about qigong, but you need to put your feelings of rejection aside and accept it.
- Do not interject your personal opinion during the learning stage
A little like discomfort, when you are in the learning stage, the key to making quick progress is to not interject your own opinions. It is important for adults to have their own opinions, and it is considered a good mental attitude to think for oneself without taking others’ advice for granted. Therefore, they may also invoke this mental attitude when learning something new.
However, when learning something new, the trick is to put this mental attitude aside for a moment and absorb and do 100% of what the teacher says, just as a small child absorbs things, so that you can improve quickly. This is because doing 100% of what the teacher says is the best way to absorb the teacher’s worldview. For example, if the teacher says, “Write with pencil on paper,” do not turn around and say, “May I write with a ballpoint pen?” You should write in pencil with the understanding that you are writing in pencil here.
You are supposed to learn because you think you have a higher world than yours, but as soon as you start thinking, “No, isn’t this part of what I am thinking also correct?” But as soon as you start thinking this way, “No, this part of what I think is right, too,” your attitude of learning from the other person will fall apart.
Once you have decided to learn from this teacher, the trick is to follow his or her advice from 1 to 100 until you have learned it all.
Then, after you have learned enough, you can try out your own ideas.
- work 100% without questioning.
Qigong is often the subject of criticism, and I think it is the best subject to consider when thinking about learning something. Before I go any further, let me say that I do not intend to denigrate those who deny qigong. This is as I wrote in detail in the article “Is Qigong an Unscientific Fiction?” I wrote about it in detail in the article “Is Qigong an Unscientific Fiction?
Here, I am writing about the case of trying to learn qigong.
I started learning qigong with the not-so-convincing knowledge that qigong might add to my mother’s cancer treatment and that I had no choice but to work on it. Since my mother would have died if my qigong was not successful, there was no time to verify whether qigong was fiction or not, and the only option was to do as much as possible because it might do some good. Those who are willing to critically examine whether qigong is real or not are those who can afford not to work on it right away.
And everything that the teacher told me to do, I did exactly as he said. I was uncomfortable with what I saw and heard for the first time, but there was no room for doubts about whether it was really different or whether it was really effective. I had no prior knowledge of qigong.
But as it turned out, all of this was a blessing in disguise. Looking back on it as a situation to learn something new, it was the best situation and attitude. And with unexpectedly good results, I was able to move on to the next stage.
I would like to add that I have learned new things on my own intention several times since then, but the learning has been slow because I could not create an ideal situation like when I learned qigong.